Before Uber and Lyft came to American cities, Steve Yankovich, vice president, innovation and new ventures at eBay Inc., was in London and tried Addison Lee, a similar taxi service that knew where he was and promptly picked him up and dropped him off without Yankovich having to open his wallet or really say much of anything.
“It’s unbelievable,” exclaimed Yankovich. “This is an entirely new experience for something we’ve done in what turns out to be a clunky way before the technology shows up.” As mobile devices empowered with geofencing capabilities and consumer data enable more and more of those sort of experiences, he continued, they are “changing what we expect in the physical world.”
As expectations change, Yankovich foresees numerous improvements to the current dynamics in physical environments that can be provided by technology. An app developed by eBay for the Philadelphia Flyers hockey team, for example, can identify what seats users are sitting in and have food or jerseys delivered to those seats, which users purchase via the app.
“You can imagine at a stadium, everybody moving around, are ushers delivering product or people going to the bathroom, that’s all. Everybody else is in their seat spending more money,” said Yankovich. “This is a physical environment where the experience completely changes.”
For stores, eBay is trying out an array of technology-driven service enhancements. Yankovich described an app designed for tablets that gives sales associates detailed information about customers, such as their purchase histories and the manner in which they like to be assisted. “Maybe there’s profile information that says leave Steve alone unless he asks for help,” said Yankovich. He also outlined a mall app that could change depending upon what store its users enter, offering different coupons and pushing merchandise that specific stores want to discount.
Yankovich went on to paint a picture of customers walking into a store and instantly mobile devices or perhaps Google Glass show all of the available merchandise they desire in their exact sizes. The customers don’t even have to interact with sales associates. They could choose, order and check out on devices and have the products given to them in the store or perhaps later when they are at home, if they opt for delivery.
“You fulfill the product, help me find [it], help me discover, make buying frictionless and then give it to me whatever way I want it,” said Yankovich, adding, “There’s no question you will close, convert; you will do more business with everyone who walks in the store if you create this magic that I’m talking about. I guarantee it.”
Touchscreens can change shopping, too. At four Kate Spade Saturday pop-up shops in New York, eBay has installed touchscreens that allow customers to make purchases with PayPal. Yankovich thinks touchscreens could play larger roles in stores on walls, tables and more. “Imagine a bed on a wall actual size and you touch it and swipe, and the bedding changes,” said Yankovich, continuing that, in the future, “We will actually see ‘Minority Report’ where the glass to you is clear, but it can become a touchscreen.”
Yankovich emphasized there’s value in trying out many different technology possibilities, although he acknowledged not everything is going to be successful. Shopping along with television shows hasn’t quite hit the mark yet. Two years ago, eBay introduced “Watch With eBay,” which allows customers to browse items related to television shows they are watching. “This will eventually happen. We were kind of too early,” said Yankovich.
Taking the final spot on the mens’ portion of New York Fashion Week calendar next month will be none other than @tomford. Though he’s shown his men’s wear in New York in the past, this will mark the first time the designer has shown his men’s collection alone during New York Fashion Week: Men’s. His runway show will debut on February 6 at the Park Avenue Armory. #wwdfashion
London-based couture house @ralphandrusso has certainly been in the spotlight, having its dresses worn by @beyonce, Angelina Jolie, Meghan Markle in her engagement photos and more. For couture, Tamara Ralph focused on ornamentation — think: feathers with chain mail, jet embroidery and clusters of pearls and crystals. See the rest of the collection on WWD.com #wwdfashion #couture (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
Minnie Mouse celebrated her 90th birthday by getting her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. For her celebratory luncheon, @coach’s creative director @stuartvevers dressed her in a custom made prairie dress, complete with Vever’s take on the polka dot – black sequined versions – under a cropped motorcycle jacket. The designer also put his own mark on Minnie’s classic red shoes, infusing the color with sparkles and adding some Coach crystals. “We chose colors that were very Minnie and also represented quintessential Coach elements,” said Vevers. #wwdfashion #nationalpolkadotday (📷: George Chinsee)
@nickjonas is unveiling his first-ever apparel collection through a partnership with John Varvatos. The limited-edition capsule, which makes its debut in spring, also marks the first time the designer has collaborated with anyone on a line. “The process in working with Nick is amazing. It’s inspiring to be around someone who is not only connected with the trade that they do, but also with what’s happening in the environment around him, and how that connects to what we do with style,” said Varvatos. (RG: @johnvarvatos) #wwdfashion
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)